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Catholic Prayer: Ave Maris Stella (Hail Star of the Sea)

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This evening prayer for Solemnities of Our Lady is attributed to Venantius Fortunatus (530-609). St. Bernard explains that the name Mary "is said to mean 'satr of the sea' . . . Indeed, most aptly is she compared to a star; for as a star sheds its beams without decay on its part, so the Virgin brought forth her Son without any damage to her virginity" (Roman Breviary, Lesson IV, Sept. 12).

Prayer:

AVE maris stella, Dei Mater alma, atque semper Virgo, felix caeli porta.HAIL, O Star of the ocean, God's own Mother blest, ever sinless Virgin, gate of heav'nly rest.
Sumens illud Ave Gabrielis ore, funda nos in pace, mutans Hevae nomen. Taking that sweet Ave, which from Gabriel came, peace confirm within us, changing Eve's name.
Solve vincula reis, profer lumen caecis mala nostra pelle, bona cuncta posce. Break the sinners' fetters, make our blindness day, Chase all evils from us, for all blessings pray.
Monstra te esse matrem: sumat per te preces, qui pro nobis natus, tulit esse tuus. Show thyself a Mother, may the Word divine born for us thine Infant hear our prayers through thine.
Virgo singularis, inter omnes mites, nos culpis solutos, mites fac et castos. Virgin all excelling, mildest of the mild, free from guilt preserve us meek and undefiled.
Vitam praesta puram, iter para tutum: ut videntes Iesum semper collaetemur. Keep our life all spotless, make our way secure till we find in Jesus, joy for evermore.
Sit laus Deo Patri, summo Christo decus, Spiritui Sancto, tribus honor unus. Amen. Praise to God the Father, honor to the Son, in the Holy Spirit, be the glory one. Amen.
From the Liturgia Horarum. Translation based on a cento from the Roman Breviary. (ref Raccolta, #321).

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